Ron Johnson objects to corona measures ‘incentivizing people to not show up for work’

By: - March 17, 2020 10:45 am
Ron Johnson with his mouth open in a yell

“Ron Johnson” by Gage Skidmore is licensed under CC BY-SA 2.0 CC BY-NC-ND 2.0

Sen. Ron Johnson (R-Wis.), says he’s not only worried about mass layoffs and other effects of an economic slowdown due to coronavirus — he’s also concerned that a House bill offering federally funded paid sick leave could lead to “incentivizing people to not show up for work,” according to USA Today.  

“You have to think this thing through in terms of what are the unintended consequences of good intentions,” Johnson said.

“People are going to have to work. People do need to recognize the fact that this is not Ebola. This is not MERS. It’s not quite the seasonal flu,” Johnson added. “But we have to keep things in perspective and we got to keep our economy.”

In an interview on radio station WTMJ’s “Steve Scaffidi Show,” on March 16, Johnson said “Nancy Pelosi is going to make businesses give paid leave when people aren’t working. The businesses are going to pay for that.” 

Johnson signaled his opposition to a House bill passed on Saturday to deal with the COVID-19 epidemic that has the support of President Donald Trump. 

On WTMJ, he suggested that the Treasury Department might be able to act independently to deal with the economic impact of the pandemic.

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Ruth Conniff
Ruth Conniff

Ruth Conniff is Editor-in-chief of the Wisconsin Examiner. Conniff is a frequent guest on MSNBC and has appeared on Good Morning America, Democracy Now!, Wisconsin Public Radio, CNN, Fox News and many other radio and television outlets. She has also written for The Nation, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and The Los Angeles Times, among other publications. Her book "Milked: How an American Crisis Brought Together Midwestern Dairy Farmers and Mexican Workers" won the 2022 Studs and Ida Terkel Award from The New Press.